by William Eric McFadden



Two members of the Southeast Ohio Radio Adventure Team succeeded in activating Cuyahoga Valley National Park as part of the ARRL's year-long National Parks on the Air (link). Eric McFadden, WD8RIF and Miles McFadden, KD8KNC activated Cuyahoga Valley National Park, NP14 (link) at the Columbia Run Picnic Area.

The pair arrived at the Boston Store Visitor Center later than planned and found the place jam-packed with hikers and bicyclists. After Eric stamped his Passport 2016 and spoke with a ranger, he and Miles drove the short distance north to the Columbia Run Picnic Area where they set up for the activation.

Eric operating--click to enlarge Eric's station was his NPOTA station: his Enhanced KX3 Travel Kit, and a custom clipboard. Eric chose to hang the 28' end-fed wire from a handy tree instead of using his MFJ-1910 33' fiberglass mast and set up the rest of the station on a picnic table.

Eric operated only CW on 40m and his first QSO was with W2JU at 1453 UTC. QSOs came steadily until Eric's 11th and final QSO with AD3Y at 1509 UTC. All of Eric's QSOs were made at the 5-watt level.

Miles did not operate but helped Eric with set-up and tear-down and did all of the activation photography.

Miles and Eric would have enjoyed touring more of Cuyahoga Valley National Park but had to drive immediately to their next destination, James A. Garfield National Historic Site (NS39) to avoid arriving there late, too.